“During the training, full advantage was taken of the rivers previously mentioned, to enjoy swimming and bathing, and Major Ringwood introduced a novel form of parade to encourage this form of sport. The men, after stripping, mounted their horses, and rode en masse into the water; some animals struck out for midstream at once, their hapless riders on their backs; others “refused” and threw the men over their heads into the water. In either case the men had to rescue themselves as best they could, and return, with their mounts, to the camp.” (2)
(1) Wills, Archie. All in a Lifetime [photograph album]. Archie Wills Fonds, University of Victoria Archives. Copyright 2007, University of Victoria.
(2) 60th C.F.A. Battery Book, 1916-1919.. 17
Swimming the horses may have been novel to the men of the 60th Battery, but it was common enough. This still from the Danish Film Institute shows Danish artillerymen and their mounts; the scene is about six minutes into a 1917 film about the Field Artillery.